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How to Configure DHCP on Windows 11 Server


DHCP stands for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol which is actually an enhancement of BOOTP (Bootstrap Protocol) and can be used for addressing both the IPv4 and IPv6. A DHCP is a network server that distributes IP addresses, default gateways, and other network settings automatically to client devices including computers, phones, IoT devices.

DHCP on windows 11

There are many devices such as IoT devices, phones, computers, etc, that are configured automatically, there is no need to manually configure them except under specific conditions.

Let’s breakdown what we’re going to cover in this article:


Before proceeding further with this article, it’s better to understand the following terms related to internet networking:

  • IP Address – Stand for Internet Protocol Address. When any device is connected to internet, it is alloted an IP Address. There are two types of IPs – Public IP and Private IP.
  • Default Gateway – Also called Domain Name Server (DNS) Server. The information is feasible from the website registered on a domain. The browser by default interacts with IP Address. DNS translates domain names to IP Address, so browsers interpret and load resources.
  • Subnet Mask – A subnet mask divides an IP address into two parts. The host (computer) is identified by one component, while the network to which it belongs is identified as another.

DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) is a protocol that automatically assigns an IP address to every device on the network. Every device must be configured with a unique identifier and other parameters before it can join the network.

This identifier is called DHCP client ID and it’s configured by either the administrator or by default. It relieves users/administrators from manually assigning IP addresses to all of the hosts on their networks. Also, it automatically provides and assigns subnet masks, default gateways, and other network parameters to client devices.

On a corporate level, it also simplifies administration because the same DHCP server can service many networks, which are often interconnected.


In this section, we’ll dig down and find how to find if your computer is already using the DHCP server.

Step #1: Open the “Control Panel” from the start menu and click the “Network and Internet” option.

select the network and internet option
Network and Internet

Step #2: Click the “Network and Sharing Center” option.

click the network and sharing center option
Network and Sharing Center

Step #3: Choose between Ethernet or Wi-Fi, depending on which network you’re connected to.

click the available network adapter - Wi-Fi or ethernet
Wi-Fi or Ethernet

Step #4: The Status panel appears in the new window. Click the “Details” button.

click the details button in the adapter status panel
“Details” button

Step #5: Check if DHCP is enabled (indicates Yes) or not (indicates No).

check the DHCP status in windows
DHCP Status

Step #1: Open the “Control Panel” from the start menu and click the “Network and Internet” option.

select the network and internet option
Network and Internet

Step #2: Click the “Network and Sharing Center” option.

click the network and sharing center option
Network and Sharing Center

Step #3: Click the “Change Adapter Settings” option from the left sidebar.

select the change adapter settings option
“Change Adapter Settings” option

Step #4: Double-click the active Internet Adapter on your computer – Ethernet or Wi-Fi. The adapter status panel will appear in the new window. Select the “Properties” button.

click the properties button in adapter status panel
“Properties” button

Step #5: Double-click the “Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)” option.

select your network adapter and double click the internet version 4 (tcp/ ipv4) option
“Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)” option

Step #6: Check the “Obtain an IP address automatically” option and the “Obtain DNS Server automatically” option. Press the “OK” button

select to obtain IP address and DNS server automatically option and press the ok button to enable DHCP
“Obtain IP Address and DNS Server Automatically” options

Note: To disable the DHCP on Windows, simply uncheck the TCP/IPv4. In some cases, your internet network may get disconnected for a minute. Normally, you need NOT restart your PC to make changes take effect.

Now again check the DHCP status on your device by following the method above.


Ease at assigning IP addresses

Without DHCP, you need to assign IP addresses manually. In this scenario, you need to stay extra careful as a slight mistake can lead to temporary server errors. While using the DHCP, the server automatically assigns IP Addresses to the client’s network.

Dynamic IP Addresses

You must manually allocate IP addresses if you don’t use DHCP. In this case, you must be especially cautious because even a minor error might result in temporary server failures. The server assigns IP addresses to the client’s network automatically while using DHCP.

DIFFICULT CONFIGURATION ON ROUTERS

It is comparatively difficult to configure DHCP on many routers as they lack in-built DHCP configuration functionality. To configure them on the routers, you need to use Command Line Interface (CLI). Example: Cisco Routers need CLI to configure DHCP.

EXCESSIVE RESOURCE USAGE

Once the DHCP is configured, resource usage from the network is more than usual. So, the network administrator should allot more than the required resources on the network to ensure smooth functioning,

Read More: Security Flaws Related To DHCP servers.


Should I use the DHCP?

You can utilize the DHCP server to avoid manually configuring the IPs, as it might cause server issues even after committing a minor input.

How do I find my default gateway in DHCP?

To find the default gateway in DHCP, open the Command Prompt and type the command: ipconfig, scroll and you’ll see the default gateway along with the real-time IP address of your device listed on the right side.


Next Steps

We’ve covered how to disable and enable DHCP on Windows Server.

Configuring the DHCP server is a complicated task, but it’s worth all the effort. It is basically a network protocol used for communicating with network devices by using the services of a server. It’s commonly used on Windows, and in many Linux distributions.

Improve your device’s overall network connectivity by following the related articles below.


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